Harvey Elliott Stands by Jordan Henderson Amidst Wembley Criticism
|Harvey Elliott of England U21 celebrates after scoring a goal to make it 3-1 during the UEFA European Under 21 Championship Qualifying match between England and Serbia at the City Ground, Nottingham on Thursday 12th October 2023.(Image-Getty)
Harvey Elliott has come to the defense of former Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson, condemning the treatment the midfielder received during England's 1-0 victory over Australia at Wembley. Henderson, who captained the team in the absence of Harry Kane, was met with jeers from the crowd when he was substituted by Kalvin Phillips in the second half.
Despite Henderson's controversial move to Al Ettifaq from Liverpool in the summer and his vocal support for LGBTQ+ rights, a cause at odds with the laws of Saudi Arabia, Elliott, who played alongside Henderson at Anfield, has expressed his unwavering support for the 33-year-old.
In an empathetic statement, Elliott highlighted Henderson's immense influence, not just on him but on many others worldwide, emphasizing the player's contributions to English football and the national team. While acknowledging the unpleasant nature of the situation, Elliott remained confident that the incident wouldn't affect Henderson's resolve, given the veteran's positive outlook and determination to excel in his career.
Gareth Southgate, the England manager, echoed similar sentiments, praising Henderson as a role model and expressing his confusion over the negative reception. Elliott revealed his intention to reach out to Henderson once the latter's England duties were completed. The 20-year-old is currently gearing up for the under-21s' clash against Ukraine, while Henderson prepares for England's upcoming match against Italy.
Elliott stressed the need to downplay the incident, highlighting the resilience Henderson has displayed throughout his career and expressing confidence in his ability to overcome the latest challenge. Reflecting on the camaraderie shared among the players at St George's Park, Elliott emphasized the value of the unity between the younger and senior members, citing their shared ambitions and aspirations as a unifying force.